SAUD BUT TRUE CRISTIANO RONALDO has been urged to snub a switch to Saudi Arabia and join the MLS instead.
That’s because his proposed £173million-a-year Middle East move risks leaving him “out of sight and out of mind.”
Cristiano Ronaldo has been told to snub Saudi Arabia for a move to the MLS
Alexi Lalas reckons Ronaldo could hurt his brand moving to the Middle East
Ronaldo, 37, is mulling his options after leaving Manchester United last month.
The Portugal star, who has been dropped for tonight’s World Cup last-16 clash against Switzerland, has received a mega-money offer from Saudi side Al-Nassr.
The £173m-a-year contract would see Ronaldo become the best-paid athlete in history.
But the veteran has been warned that joining Al-Nassr could end up damaging his brand and reputation.
Alexi Lalas feels a move to the Middle East is not a sensible option.
He argues that Saudi Arabian football is not well followed, and Ronaldo risks vanishing off the map as a result.
Lalas, who knows about star deals after signing David Beckham for LA Galaxy in 2007, believes Ronnie would be far better off playing in America.
Becks enhanced his global appeal playing in the MLS, with the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Wayne Rooney also enjoying major success.
Domoredosport exclusively revealed Beckham’s Inter Miami have already held talks with Ronaldo.
And Lalas believes the five-time Ballon d’Or winner should be crossing the Atlantic instead of the Mediterranean.
He told Fox: “It sounds like he’s going to make a boatload of money and go to Saudi Arabia and play.
“It kind of is out of sight and out of mind. I can’t remember the last time we heard about the Saudi Arabian league.
“For a guy that is so concerned about his brand, and certainly has more money than he can do with, it’s a strange type of thing for him to do.
“For 200 million dollars you’ll figure it out, but if the alternative is making less money and I get to go and play and live in Miami or Los Angeles…
“MLS can’t compete with that type of money, but what MLS can give him is a much bigger entrée into the American market – he’s already huge in America.
“For a guy that’s cultivated this brand over the years, that might have been more appealing.
“In the moment he might not have made the money, he might have also established his brand.
“I’m not saying we’re not going to hear from Cristiano Ronaldo or his brand can’t grow, but it’s sure as hell I would think not going to grow as much being in Saudi Arabia relative to the United States.
“We’ve seen it with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, David Beckham, Thierry Henry or Wayne Rooney. The moments they have from a MLS perspective do go viral, it’s not completely out of sight, out of mind.”